Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

climate canary - definition and synonyms


What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.

  1. From our crowdsourced Open Dictionary
    an unexpected change in something from the natural world which is caused by climate change, and which indicates that much bigger environmental problems are likely in the future

    As 2015 closes, it is easy to feel daunted by the future - even overwhelmed. In a year that saw the world pass the historic 400PPM of atmospheric carbon for the first time in a long time, and with global temperature records seeming to be broken on a now regular basis, it is easy to feel alarmed by the mounting climate canary.

    Submitted by Kerry on 18/03/2016
quiz invitation


a description of an economic or political situation based on analysis of information at the present time

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary


an unregulated form of capitalism that features financial deregulation, privatisation and low tax for high earners

add a word


A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog
Macmillan learn live love play